Global Media Intelligence 2021: Russia

Noteworthy in 2021

Smartphone ownership is still inching up in Russia, while PCs and tablets are losing fans.

  • The gap between smartphone and PC ownership has continued to widen. More than 95% of internet users ages 16 to 64 polled had a smartphone in H1 2021, while PC penetration dropped from 87.4% to 79.7% year over year (YoY).
  • During the same period, tablet ownership declined from 37.8% to just under 32%. Apparently many internet users no longer see a tablet as an aspirational device; in every demographic, the share owning a tablet had fallen significantly. That said, 45.5% of respondents in high-income households still owned a tablet.
  • One-fifth of internet users in Russia owned a feature phone in H1 2021. Penetration is increasingly concentrated among the oldest cohort, ages 55 to 64; in that group, more than 29% had a fairly basic handset.
  • As in 2019 and 2020, about 31% of respondents had a smart TV. In lower-income homes, penetration was closer to 22%, but in more affluent households, ownership was 44.9%.
  • As these figures suggest, many advanced digital devices still have little market presence in Russia, and adoption is slow. For example, smartwatch penetration climbed from 7.5% to 9.3% this year, and 14.3% of respondents had a smart wristband. Barely 1 in 10 owned a game console. And just 3.6% owned a smart home device, such as a home security system that could be managed via a mobile app.


Karin von Abrams


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